The Spaniard revealed that Atsu had earlier suffered a 'kick' in Newcastle United’s defeat to Bournemouth on November 4 and could not play a part in the Black Stars' 1-1 draw against Egypt in a dead rubber 2018 World Cup Qualifying encounter on November 12.
“He had a kick during the game against Bournemouth, and after when he shot he was feeling it a little bit,” Benitez told Shield Gazette.
“He put some ice on it and said he was fine. Then he went away with the national team. He had a training session and they [Ghana] sent him back.
"It's not the case that they were using him and then something happened. He had a little problem and then he went there, couldn't play and he came back. It's not that it's their fault. It's just something that happened."
Atsu who joined the St James' Park outfit permanently from Chelsea for a fee in the region of £6 million in June has registered a goal in 915 minutes of Premier League action this season.